The history of Old English and its development — страница 6

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hýde           hýda D  hýde           hýdum A  hýd             hýde, hýda This kind of stems included all three genders and derived from the same type of Indo-European stems, frequent also in other branches and languages of the family. Examples: masculine - mere (a sea), mete (food), dæl (a part), giest (a guest), drync (a drink); neuter - spere (a spear); feminine - cwén (a woman), wiht (a thing).        u-stems          

Masc.                       Fem.                         Sg. N  sunu (son)feld (field)  duru (door) hand (hand) G  suna         felda          dura           handa D  suna         felda          dura           handa A 

sunu         feld            duru           hand                         Pl. N  suna         felda          dura           handa G  suna         felda          dura           handa D  sunum     

feldum       durum         handum A  suna         felda          dura           handa They can be either masculine or feminine. Here it is seen clearly how Old English lost its final -s in endings: Gothic had sunus and handus, while Old English has already sunu and hand respectively. Interesting that dropping final consonants is also a general trend of almost all Indo-European languages. Ancient tongues still keep them everywhere - Greek, Latin, Gothic, Old Prussian, Sanskrit, Old Irish; but later, no matter where a language is situated and what processes it undergoes,

final consonants (namely -s, -t, often -m, -n) disappear, remaining nowadays only in the two Baltic languages and in New Greek. Examples:  masculine - wudu (wood), medu (honey), weald (forest), sumor (a summer); fem. - nosu (a nose), flór (a floor). The other type of nouns according to their declension was the group of Weak nouns, derived from n-nouns is Common Germanic. Their declension is simple and stable, having special endings:       Masc.            Fem.                  Neut.                     Sg.

N  nama (name) cwene (woman)  éage (eye) G  naman           cwenan               éagan D  naman           cwenan               éagan A  naman           cwenan               éage                     Pl. N  naman